Monthly Archives: December 2017

Three Things Rama Wasn’t Compelled To Do

Krishna's Mercy

[Rama meeting Shabari]“Today, being graced with Your presence, I have obtained the results of my penances and austerities. Today, my birth has been made fruitful and my spiritual masters have been well honored.” (Shabari speaking to Lord Rama, Valmiki Ramayana, Aranya Kand, 74.11)

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Shri Rama is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He stands strong and fearless, with bow and arrow in hand. He enhances the stature of the Raghu dynasty, the family of rulers in which He appears. He upholds dharma, which is the only way to real happiness. Like bad weather threatening the outside of a home, adharma is always around, ready to bring down the pious and innocent in its path. From time to time the Supreme descends to provide added security.

“In order to deliver the pious and to annihilate the miscreants, as well as to reestablish the principles of religion…

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Three Criticisms Devotees Don’t Mind Hearing

Krishna's Mercy

[Goswami Tulsidas]“Knowers of the Vedas deride me as someone who simply holds a japa mala. Jnanis tell me that I am without knowledge, that I don’t know how to even perform rituals. Giving up the three paths, Tulsi humbly approaches Shri Rama’s door.” (Dohavali, 99)

karama।tha ka।thamaliyā kahaiṃ gyānī gyāna bihīna |
tulasī tripatha bihāi go rāma duāreṃ dīna ||

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The Supreme Personality of Godhead is above the three modes of material nature. When He appears the form visible before the eyes is sometimes described as saguna. Literally translating this Sanskrit word, the meaning is “with qualities.”

Gunas typically refer to material qualities, belonging to the categories of goodness, passion or ignorance. Gunas also refer to ropes, and the two meanings are linked. Material qualities are binding; they keep a person tied to the cycle of birth and death.

Gunas are also a…

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Good For Nothing

Krishna's Mercy

[Goswami Tulsidas]“Knowers of the Vedas deride me as someone who simply holds a japa mala. Jnanis tell me that I am without knowledge, that I don’t know how to even perform rituals. Giving up the three paths, Tulsi humbly approaches Shri Rama’s door.” (Dohavali, 99)

karama।tha ka।thamaliyā kahaiṃ gyānī gyāna bihīna |
tulasī tripatha bihāi go rāma duāreṃ dīna ||

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It’s a legitimate argument to make. It comes especially from those who are unfamiliar. Seeing a new hairstyle, clothing, and overall way of living, everything is strange. And then it’s for a specific purpose, but where is the evidence that the purpose is being met? How to gauge that there is progress? If I’m travelling to a certain destination, if my car is stuck it means that the entire endeavor is useless. At least if I have gone halfway there was something positive from…

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Doing Something About The Unknown

Krishna's Mercy

[Shri Rama]“Something can only be known when an attempt to know is made. Otherwise, how to know? Hearing this, Tulsi says to call Shri Rama, holding bow and arrow, to your heart to understand Him.” (Dohavali, 98)

jāneṃ jānana joiai binu jāne ko jāna |
tulasī yaha suni samujhi hiya’ ānu dhareṃ dhanu bāna ||

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His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada says that one of the purposes of pious activities is for avoiding becoming an atheist. In addition to gaining a positive, active engagement, wisdom is slowly acquired. Without these activities, once bad fortune arrives it is easier to conclude, erroneously so, that there is no supreme controller.

“Without pious activities, if a man is in a distressed condition he becomes an agnostic, communist or something like that. Because he does not firmly believe in God, he thinks that he can adjust his…

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Three Things To Be Greedy For

Krishna's Mercy

[Sita-Rama]“Remembering Shri Rama, being His devotee and recognizing Him as the supreme authority – the person who does not have greed for such a reward will be in want every single day, says Tulsi.” (Dohavali, 97)

sumirana sevā rāma soṃ sāhaba soṃ pahicāni |
aisehu lābha na lalaka jo tulasī nita hita hāni ||

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It’s understandable to be greedy. Though we don’t like to see that quality in others, it must be admitted that it arises at the personal level from time to time. There are trigger words. “Limited edition.” “For a limited time only.” “Once in a lifetime opportunity.” Originating from the seller, the words might cause “a run” on a product, where suddenly so many people want to buy it.

[Line to buy iPhone]Another cause of greed is envy. I see that someone bought a new house. It is very nice. Now I want…

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Confessions Of A Flawed Human Being

Krishna's Mercy

[Sita-Rama]“Tulsi says that one should confess to the merciful Shri Rama about the good and the bad. In so doing the burden of sorrow will diminish, and in that full surrender to the supreme strength will increase and one will become fully satisfied.” (Dohavali, 96)

tulasī rāma k।rpālu soṃ kahi sunāu guna do।sa |
hoya dūbarī dīnatā parama pīna santo।sa ||

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Man is not perfect. To err is human. Even the most sober person, keeping strict attention on right and wrong, pious and impious, is bound to fall victim to desire every now and then. Such as at a gathering where pizza is ordered, the fair thing to do is allow each person the same number of slices. After you’ve had a few, however, you want more. While no one is looking, you take two extra. No one knows the culprit, except you.

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My Body Aches From Mistakes

Krishna's Mercy

[Sita-Rama]“The many past births you spoiled can be rectified right now, today, if you start chanting Shri Rama’s holy name and renounce bad association, says Tulsi.” (Dohavali, 22)

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Friend1: Have you ever been burned by a politician?

Friend2: Literally? As in did they light a match and chase after me?

Friend1: You know what I mean. Where you invested faith in them. You endorsed them, made phone calls, tried to persuade people to vote. Others tried to warn you against getting so involved.

Friend2: Yeah. Don’t get into politics. These people thrive on lying. Duplicity is dharma for their business. Honesty is adharma. I always compare it to professional basketball.

Friend1: How so?

Friend2: Complaining about lying politicians is like complaining that the players in professional basketball are tall. The rules of the game are such that shorter or average heights are…

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